This weekend I started the second leg of my cycle trip around the country.
The loose route at the moment is from Jičín to Turnov, Malá Skala and Liberec; then via Ještěd through the Czech Switzerland national park, before turning south towards Ústí nad Labem, Terezín and Litoměřice. From there via Říp mountain to Mělník, Budeč and Lidice, just outside Prague.
I don’t fancy cycling in or writing about Prague though, so I’ll turn west towards Slany, Louny, Most and Chomutov, where I hope to catch the Olomouc hockey team in action at the end of September. The first week of October I’ll spend in West Bohemia before finishing this stage of the trip with a few days in Plzeň.
As always, if anyone has any tips or suggestions, I’m all ears. The tips I received last time from various sources were very helpful.
On the last trip I was surprised how many people asked about the equipment I was using. Unfortunately I don’t have interesting tales to tell about hi-tech cycling outfits or GPS devices or titanium bits and pieces. The second-hand bike I’m using owes me about 3000Kč ($200) now, including the panniers and handlebar bag in which I carry:
- Trousers, a long sleeved shirt and 2 brightly-coloured t-shirts for cycling
- Another pair of trousers, a pair of shorts and two shirts for wearing around towns
- One pair of shoes and one pair of sandals
- As many socks and underpants as space allows
- A bright yellow poncho
- A basic tool kit, spare tube and elastic straps
- A small towel, a facewasher and a bag of toiletries
- Camera and battery charger
- Phone and charger
- Computer, memory sticks, a couple of notebooks and some pens
- Maps and printed information
- Sunglasses and helmet
- And last but not least, my wallet and keys for the bike lock
Having bumped into several travellers carrying these little machines I had the chance to try before buying and was pretty impressed with what I found. One of the only complaints was that the small screens required too much side to side scrolling, so I waited especially for the newer model to come out, as it has a 9-inch screen; 2 inches wider than the older model.
A couple of Eee owners said “it’s good for what it is, but you wouldn’t want to write a book on it”. Which of course, is exactly what I want to use it for. So we’ll see how that goes.
The book so far is progressing…slowly.
I think it will be smoother from now on though, because working on the first stage has given me a fair idea of how the book will be arranged, and I’ll be able to take better notes this time around. The book will be about the interesting places that I’m visiting, and each destination will have a chapter of its own; some might have two. Because it’s also a book about a cycle trip, the destination chapters will be linked by (much shorter) chapters about the travelling days and the cycle routes.
Hopefully it will be interesting enough for somebody to want to publish. If not, you’ll find it here for free as an ebook.
Wish me luck. See you on the other side.